Blessed are the Poor in Spirit

The Beatitudes Bible Study Series

Part 1: Blessed are the Poor in Spirit

This bible study series covers each of the verses in Jesus’ famous beatitudes teaching. This is considered one of the most important of Jesus’ teachings because it describes how the believer should posture themselves in order to be fruitful and effective in their faith.

Opening Prayer

“Lord, give me an understanding of Your word so that I can bring my life and will into conformance with Your heart and purposes.”


  • NASB – “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”
  • NIV – “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
  • NKJV – “Blessed are the poor in spirit, For theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
  • KJV – “Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”
  • NLT – “God blesses those who are poor and realize their need for him, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs.
  • TPT – “What wealth is offered to you when you feel your spiritual poverty! For there is no charge to enter the realm of heaven’s kingdom.”
  • CEV – “God blesses those people who depend only on him. They belong to the kingdom of heaven!”
  • GNT – “Happy are those who know they are spiritually poor; the Kingdom of heaven belongs to them!”
  • GWT – “Blessed are those who recognize they are spiritually helpless. The kingdom of heaven belongs to them.”
  • YLT – “Happy the poor in spirit — because theirs is the reign of the heavens.”


At the core of Jesus’ teaching lies the beatitudes. They convey the principles for how to position your life to prosper in God’s Kingdom. This verse is considered the gateway beatitude. By bringing your life into alignment with this beatitude, you make possible all the other principles given in the subsequent ones. Likewise, until you work this principle into your life, you simply won’t have the foundation necessary to make the other ones possible. The principles Jesus defines in this beatitude are crucial to the believer’s success.

Word Studies
  • Greek: Μακάριοι (Makarioi)
  • Type: Adjective – Nominative Masculine Plural
  • Translated: blessed
  • Also translated: happy
  • Meaning: happy, blessed, to be envied. A prolonged form of the poetical makar; supremely blest; by extension, fortunate, well off.
  • Also used in passages: Mt 11:6, Mt 13:6 Mt 16:17, Mt 24:46, Lk 1:45, Lk 6:20, Lk 6:21-22, Lk 10:23, Lk 11:27-28, Lk 12:37-38, Lk 12:43, Lk 14:14-15, Lk 23:29, Jn 13:17, Jn 20:29, Acts 20:35, Acts 26:2, Rom 4:7-8, 1 Cor 7:40, 1 Tim 1:11, 1 Tim 6:15, Titus 2:13, James 1:12, James 1:25, 1 Pet 3:14, 1 Pet 4:14, Rev 1:3, Rev 14:13, Rev 16:15, Rev 19:9, Rev 20:6, Rev 22:7, Rev 22:14.
  • Greek: πτωχοὶ (ptōchoi)
  • Type: Adjective – Nominative Masculine Plural
  • Translated: poor
  • Also translated: beggar, beggarly, worthless
  • Meaning: Poor, destitute, spiritually poor, either in a good sense (humble devout persons) or bad.
  • Also used in passages: Mt 11:5, Mt 19:21, Mt 26:9, Mt 26:11, Mk 10:21, Mk 12:42-43, Mk 14:5-7, Lk 4:!8, Lk 6:20, Lk 7:22, Lk 14:13, Lk 14:21, Lk 16:20-22, Lk 18:22, Lk 19:8, Lk 21:3, Jn 12:5-6, Jn 12:8, Jn 13:29, Rom 15:26, 2 Cor 6:10, Gal 2:10, Gal 4:9, James 2:3-6, Rev 3:17, Rev 13:16.
  • Greek: πνεύματι (pneumati)
  • Type: Noun – Dative Neuter Singular
  • Translated: spirit
  • Also translated: spirits, ghost, ghosts, wind
  • Meaning: Wind, breath, spirit.
  • Also used in passages: Mt 1:18, Mt 1:20, Mt 3:11, Mt 3:16, Mt 4:1, Mt 5:3, Mt 8:16, Mt 10:1, Mt 10:20, Mt 12:18, Mt 12:28, Mt 12:31-32, Mt 12:43-45, Mt 22:43, Mt 26:41, Mt 27:50, Mt 28:19, Mk 1:8, Mk 1:10, Mk 1:12, Mk 1:23, Mk 1:26-27, Mk 2:8, Mk 3:11, Mk 3:29-30, Mk 5:2, Mk 5:8, Mk 5:23, Mk 6:7, Mk 7:25, Mk 8:12, Mk 9:17, Mk 9:20, Mk 9:25, Mk 12:36, Mk 13:11, Mk 14:38, Lk 1:15, Lk 1:17, Lk 1:35, Lk 1:41, Lk 1:47, Lk 1:67, Lk 1:80, Lk 2:25-27, Lk 3:16, Lk 4:1, Lk 4:14, Lk 4:18, Lk 4:33, Lk 4:36, Lk 6:18, Lk 7:21, Lk 8:2, Lk 8:29, Lk 9:39, Lk 9:42, Lk 9:55, Lk 10:20-21, etc.
  • Greek: αὐτῶν (autōn)
  • Type: Personal / Possessive Pronoun – Genitive Masculine 3rd Person Plural
  • Translated: spirit
  • Also translated: he, him, her, their
  • Meaning: He, she, it, they, them, same. From the particle au; the reflexive pronoun self, used of the third person, and of the other persons.
  • Also used in passages: Mt 1:2, Mt :11, Mt 1:18-21, Mt 1:23-25, Mt 2:2-5, etc.
  • Greek: βασιλεία (basileia)
  • TypeNoun – Nominative Feminine Singular
  • Translated: Kingdom
  • Also translated: 
  • Meaning: From basileus; properly, royalty, i.e. rule, or a realm.
  • Also used in passages: Mt 3:2, Mt 4:8, Mt 4:17, Mt 4:23, Mt 5:3, Mt 5:10, Mt 5:19-20, Mt 6:10, Mt 6:13, Mt 6:33, Mt 7:21, Mt 8:11-12, Mt 9:35, Mt 10:7, Mt 11:11-12, Mt 12:25-26, Mt 13:11. Mt 13:19, Mt 13:24
  • Greek: οὐρανῶν (ouranōn)
  • Type: Noun – Genitive Masculine Plural
  • Translated: heaven
  • Also translated: air, sky
  • Meaning: Perhaps from the same as oros; the sky; by extension, heaven; by implication, happiness, power, eternity; especially, the Gospel.
  • Also used in passages: Mt 3:2, Mt 3:16,-17, Mt 4:17, Mt 5:3, Mt 5:10, Mt 5:12, Mt 5:16, Mt 5:18-20, Mt 5:34, Mt 5:45, Mt 6:1, Mt 6:9-10, Mt 6:20, Mt 6:26, Mt 7:11, Mt 7:21, Mt 8:11, Mt 8:20, Mt 10:7, Mt 10:32-33, Mt 11:11-12, Mt 11:23, Mt 11:25, Mt 12:50, Mt 13:11, Mt 13:24, Mt 13:31-33, Mt 13:44-45, etc. 

Blessed: Jesus promised blessing to His disciples, promising that the poor in spirit are blessed. The idea behind the ancient Greek word for blessed is “happy,” but in the truest, godly sense of the word, not in our modern sense of merely being comfortable or entertained at the moment.

i. This same word for blessed – which in some sense means “happy” is applied to God in 1 Timothy 1:11according to the glorious gospel of the blessed God. “Makarios then describes that joy which has its secret within itself, that joy which is serene and untouchable, and self-contained, that joy which is completely independent of all the chances and changes of life.” (Barclay)

ii. In Matthew 25:34, Jesus said that on the Day of Judgment He would say to His people, Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. On that day, He will judge between the blessed and the cursed – He both knows and explains what are the requirements for the blessed one. We can also say that no one was ever blessed more than Jesus; He knows what goes into a blessed life.

iii. “You have not failed to notice that the last word of the Old Testament is ‘curse,’ and it is suggestive that the opening sermon of our Lord’s ministry commences with the word ‘Blessed.'” (Spurgeon)

iv. “Note, also, with delight, that the blessing is in every case in the present tense, a happiness to be now enjoyed and delighted in. It is not ‘Blessed shall be,’ but ‘Blessed are.'” (Spurgeon)

b. The poor in spirit: This is not a man’s confession that he is by nature insignificant, or personally without value, for that would be untrue. Instead, it is a confession that he is sinful and rebellious and utterly without moral virtues adequate to commend him to God.

i. The poor in spirit recognize that they have no spiritual “assets.” They know they are spiritually bankrupt. We might say that the ancient Greek had a word for the “working poor” and a word for the “truly poor.” Jesus used the word for the truly poor here. It indicates someone who must beg for whatever they have or get.

ii. Poverty of spirit cannot be artificially induced by self-hatred; the Holy Spirit and our response to His working in our hearts bring it about.

iii. This beatitude is first, because this is where we start with God. “A ladder, if it is to be of any use, must have its first step near the ground, or feeble climbers will never be able to mount. It would have been a grievous discouragement to struggling faith if the first blessing had been given to the pure in heart; to that excellence the young beginner makes no claim, while to poverty of spirit he can reach without going beyond his line.” (Spurgeon)

iv. Everyone can start here; it isn’t first blessed are the pure or the holy or the spiritual or the wonderful. Everyone can be poor in spirit. “Not what I have, but what I have not, is the first point of contact, between my soul and God.” (Spurgeon)

c. For theirs is the kingdom of heaven: Those who are poor in spirit, so poor they must beg, are rewarded. They receive the kingdom of heaven because poverty of spirit is an absolute prerequisite for receiving the kingdom of heaven and as long as we harbor illusions about our own spiritual resources we will never receive from God what we absolutely need to be saved.

i. “The kingdom of heaven is not given on the basis of race, earned merits, the military zeal and prowess of Zealots, or the wealth of a Zacchaeus. It is given to the poor, the despised publicans, the prostitutes, those who are so ‘poor’ they know they can offer nothing and do not try. They cry for mercy and they alone are heard.” (Carson)

ii. “The poor in spirit are lifted from the dunghill, and set, not among hired servants in the field, but among princes in the kingdom … ‘Poor in spirit;’ the words sound as if they described the owners of nothing, and yet they describe the inheritors of all things. Happy poverty! Millionaires sink into insignificance, the treasure of the Indies evaporate in smoke, while to the poor in spirit remains a boundless, endless, faultless kingdom, which renders them blessed in the esteem of him who is God over all, blessed for ever.” (Spurgeon)

iii. The call to be poor in spirit is placed first for a reason, because it puts the following commands into perspective. They cannot be fulfilled by one’s own strength, but only by a beggar’s reliance on God’s power. No one mourns until they are poor in spirit; no one is meek towards others until he has a humble view of himself. If you don’t sense your own need and poverty you will never hunger and thirst after righteousness, and if you have too high a view of yourself you will find it difficult to be merciful to others.

I. The poor in spirit are happy, v. 3. There is a poor-spiritedness that is so far from making men blessed that it is a sin and a snare—cowardice and base fear, and a willing subjection to the lusts of men. But this poverty of spirit is a gracious disposition of soul, by which we are emptied of self, in order to our being filled with Jesus Christ. To be poor in spirit is, 1. To be contentedly poor, willing to be emptied of worldly wealth, if God orders that to be our lot; to bring our mind to our condition, when it is a low condition. Many are poor in the world, but high in spirit, poor and proud, murmuring and complaining, and blaming their lot, but we must accommodate ourselves to our poverty, must know how to be abased, Phil. iv. 12. Acknowledging the wisdom of God in appointing us to poverty, we must be easy in it, patiently bear the inconveniences of it, be thankful for what we have, and make the best of that which is. It is to sit loose to all worldly wealth, and not set our hearts upon it, but cheerfully to bear losses and disappointments which may befal us in the most prosperous state. It is not, in pride or pretence, to make ourselves poor, by throwing away what God has given us, especially as those in the church of Rome, who vow poverty, and yet engross the wealth of the nations; but if we be rich in the world we must be poor in spirit, that is, we must condescend to the poor and sympathize with them, as being touched with the feeling of their infirmities; we must expect and prepare for poverty; must not inordinately fear or shun it, but must bid it welcome, especially when it comes upon us for keeping a good conscience, Heb. x. 34. Job was poor in spirit, when he blessed God in taking away, as well as giving. 2. It is to be humble and lowly in our own eyes. To be poor in spirit, is to think meanly of ourselves, of what we are, and have, and do; the poor are often taken in the Old Testament for the humble and self-denying, as opposed to those that are at ease, and the proud; it is to be as little children in our opinion of ourselves, weak, foolish, and insignificant, ch. xviii. 4; xix. 14. Laodicea was poor in spirituals, wretchedly and miserably poor, and yet rich in spirit, so well increased with goods, as to have need of nothing, Rev. iii. 17. On the other hand, Paul was rich in spirituals, excelling most in gifts and graces, and yet poor in spirit, the least of the apostles, less than the least of all saints, and nothing in his own account. It is to look with a holy contempt upon ourselves, to value others and undervalue ourselves in comparison of them. It is to be willing to make ourselves cheap, and mean, and little, to do good; to become all things to all men. It is to acknowledge that God is great, and we are mean; that he is holy and we are sinful; that he is all and we are nothing, less than nothing, worse than nothing; and to humble ourselves before him, and under his mighty hand. 3. It is to come off from all confidence in our own righteousness and strength, that we may depend only upon the merit of Christ for our justification, and the spirit and grace of Christ for our sanctification. That broken and contrite spirit with which the publican cried for mercy to a poor sinner, is that poverty of spirit. We must call ourselves poor, because always in want of God’s grace, always begging at God’s door, always hanging on in his house.

Now, (1.) This poverty in spirit is put first among the Christian graces. The philosophers did not reckon humility among their moral virtues, but Christ puts it first. Self-denial is the first lesson to be learned in his school, and poverty of spirit entitled to the first beatitude. The foundation of all other graces is laid in humility. Those who would build high must begin low; and it is an excellent preparative for the entrance of gospel-grace into the soul; it fits the soil to receive the seed. Those who are weary and heavy laden, are the poor in spirit, and they shall find rest with Christ.

(2.) They are blessed. Now they are so, in this world. God looks graciously upon them. They are his little ones, and have their angels. To them he gives more grace; they live the most comfortable lives, and are easy to themselves and all about them, and nothing comes amiss to them; while high spirits are always uneasy.

(3.) Theirs is the kingdom of heaven. The kingdom of grace is composed of such; they only are fit to be members of Christ’s church, which is called the congregation of the poor (Ps. lxxiv. 19); the kingdom of glory is prepared for them. Those who thus humble themselves, and comply with God when he humbles them, shall be thus exalted. The great, high spirits go away with the glory of the kingdoms of the earth; but the humble, mild, and yielding souls obtain the glory of the kingdom of heaven. We are ready to think concerning those who are rich, and do good with their riches, that, no doubt, theirs is the kingdom of heaven; for they can thus lay up in store a good security for the time to come; but what shall the poor do, who have not wherewithal to do good? Why, the same happiness is promised to those who are contentedly poor, as to those who are usefully rich. If I am not able to spend cheerfully for his sake, if I can but want cheerfully for his sake, even that shall be recompensed. And do not we serve a good master then?

Blessed are the poor in spirit. The word blessed means happy, referring to that which produces felicity, from whatever quarter it may come.
Poor in spirit. Luke says simply, blessed are THE poor. It has been disputed whether Christ meant the poor in reference to the things of this life, or the humble. The gospel is said to be preached to the poor, Luke 4:18; Matt. 11:5. It was predicted that the Messiah should preach to the poor, Isa. 61:1. It is said that they have peculiar facilities for being saved, Matt. 19:23; Luke 18:24. The state of such persons is therefore comparatively blessed, or happy. Riches produce care, anxiety, and dangers, and not the least is the danger of losing heaven by them. To be poor in spirit is to have a humble opinion of ourselves; to be sensible that we are sinners, and have no righteousness of our own; to be willing to be saved only by the rich grace and mercy of God; to be willing to be where God places us, to bear what he lays on us, to go where he bids us, and to die when he commands; to be willing to be in his hands, and to feel that we deserve no favour from him. It is opposed to pride, and vanity, and ambition. Such are happy:
(1.) Because there is more real enjoyment in thinking of ourselves as we are than in being filled with pride and vanity.
(2.) Because such Jesus chooses to bless, and on them, he confers his favours here.
(3.) Because theirs will be the kingdom of heaven hereafter. It is remarkable that Jesus began his ministry in this manner, so unlike all others. Other teachers had taught that happiness was to be found in honour, or riches, or splendour, or sensual pleasure. Jesus overlooked all those things, and fixed his eye on the poor, and the humble, and said that happiness was to be found in the lowly vale of poverty, more than in the pomp and splendours of life.

Theirs is the kingdom of heaven. That is, either they have peculiar facilities for entering the kingdom of heaven, and of becoming Christians here, or they shall enter heaven hereafter. Both these ideas are probably included. A state of poverty—a state where we are despised or unhonoured by men—is a state where men are most ready to seek the comforts of religion here or a home in the heavens hereafter. See Note on Matt. 2:2.

Since Matthew introduces the Sermon on the Mount by highlighting the connection between Jesus and Moses, the Beatitudes (Mt 5:3–12) should probably be read against the backdrop of Moses’ teachings. The only time the adjective “Blessed” (Gk makarios) was used by Moses was in his blessing on Israel (Dt 33:29): “How happy you are, Israel! Who is like you, a people saved by the LORD? He is the shield that protects you, the sword you boast in. Your enemies will cringe before you, and you will tread on their backs.” Israel’s blessing had both a historical and future focus. “Saved by the LORD” referred to Israel’s exodus from Egypt. The remainder of the blessing assured the Israelites of success in their conquest of the promised land. Against this backdrop, the blessings of the new Moses identify Jesus’ disciples as the new Israel who will enjoy a new exodus and conquest. The new Moses is a spiritual deliverer rather than a political one, and His promises must be understood in that light. In the Beatitudes, the new Moses pronounces spiritual salvation (exodus from slavery to sin) and promises spiritual victory (conquest and inheritance of a new promised land) to the new Israel. This background is confirmed by the allusion to Israel’s exodus and conquest in the promise that the meek will “inherit the earth” (5:5).

Jesus began his sermon with words that seem to contradict each other. But God’s way of living usually contradicts the world’s. If you want to live for God, you must be ready to say and do what seems strange to the world. You must be willing to give when others take, to love when others hate, to help when others abuse. By giving up your own rights in order to serve others, you will one day receive everything God has in store for you.

5:3-12 The Beatitudes can be understood in at least four ways: (1) They are a code of ethics for the disciples and a standard of conduct for all believers. (2) They contrast Kingdom values (what is eternal) with worldly values (what is temporary). (3) They contrast the superficial “faith” of the Pharisees with the real faith that Christ demands. (4) They show how the Old Testament expectations will be fulfilled in the new Kingdom. These Beatitudes are not multiple choice—pick what you like and leave the rest. They must be taken as a whole. They describe what we should be like as Christ’s followers.

5:3-12 Each beatitude tells how to be blessed by God. Blessed means more than happiness. It implies the fortunate or enviable state of those who are in God’s Kingdom. The Beatitudes don’t promise laughter, pleasure, or earthly prosperity. Being “blessed” by God means the experience of hope and joy, independent of outward circumstances. To find hope and joy, the deepest form of happiness, follow Jesus no matter what the cost.

I. The foundation of all is laid in poverty of spirit. The word rendered ‘poor’ does not only signify one in a condition of want, but rather one who is aware of the condition, and seeks relief. If we may refer to Latin words here, it is mendicus rather than pauper, a beggar rather than a poor man, who is meant. So that to be poor in spirit is to be in inmost reality conscious of need, of emptiness, of dependence on God, of demerit; the true estimate of self, as blind, evil, weak, is intended; the characteristic tone of feeling pointed to is self-abnegation, like that of the publican smiting his breast, or that of the disease-weakened, hunger-tortured prodigal, or that of the once self-righteous Paul, ‘O wretched man that I am!’ People who do not like evangelical teaching sometimes say, ‘Give me the Sermon on the Mount.’ So say I. Only let us take all of it; and if we do, we shall come, as we shall have frequent occasion to point out, in subsequent passages, to something uncommonly like the evangelical theology to which it is sometimes set up as antithetic. For Christ begins His portraiture of a citizen of the kingdom with the consciousness of want and sin. All the rest of the morality of the Sermon is founded on this. It is the root of all that is heavenly and divine in character. So this teaching is dead against the modern pagan doctrine of self-reliance, and really embodies the very principle for the supposed omission of which some folk like this Sermon; namely, that our proud self-confidence must be broken down before God can do any good with us, or we can enter His kingdom.

The promises attached to the Beatitudes are in each case the results which flow from the quality, rather than the rewards arbitrarily given for it. So here, the possession of the kingdom comes by consequence from poverty of spirit. Of course, such a kingdom as could be so inherited was the opposite of that which the narrow and fleshly nationalism of the Jews wanted, and these first words must have cooled many incipient disciples. The ‘kingdom of heaven’ is the rule of God through Christ. It is present wherever wills bow to Him; it is future, as to complete realisation, in the heaven from which it comes, and to which, like its King, it belongs even while on earth. Obviously, its subjects can only be those who feel their dependence, and in poverty of spirit have cast off self-will and self-reliance. ‘Theirs is the kingdom’ does not mean ‘they shall rule,’ but ‘of them shall be its subjects.’ True, they shall rule in the perfected form of it; but the first, and in a real sense the only, blessedness is to obey God; and that blessedness can only come when we have learned poverty of spirit, because we see ourselves as in need of all things.

The first twelve verses, or the “Beatitudes” constitute an exordium to the discourse, in which is set forth the characteristics of the heirs of the Kingdom. There are nine beatitudes, and dispensationally viewed, show us Israel, or rather the faithful remnant of Israel, in the tribulation period awaiting the Kingdom. They will be poor in spirit, and shall get the Kingdom. They will mourn and shall be comforted. They will be meek and shall inherit the earth. They will hunger and thirst after righteousness, and shall be filled.

But in an accommodated sense the beatitudes apply to believers in the present age. There is a heavenly side and an earthly side to the Kingdom, and it is only those who are “poor in spirit,” humbling themselves on account of sin and believing on the Lord Jesus Christ, who, through the new birth, receive the Kingdom. They who now mourn for their sins are comforted in forgiveness and cleansing through the blood. They who now hunger and thirst after righteousness are filled. As Weston says, we have here a picture of a redeemed and sanctified man, an ideal man whom the Saviour is to make actual by saving him from his sin.

(1) Our attitude toward ourselves (v. 3). To be poor in spirit means to be humble, to have a correct estimate of oneself (Rom. 12:3). It does not mean to be “poor spirited” and have no backbone at all! “Poor in spirit” is the opposite of the world’s attitudes of self-praise and self-assertion. It is not a false humility that says, “I am not worth anything; I can’t do anything!” It is honesty with ourselves: We know ourselves, accept ourselves, and try to be ourselves to the glory of God.


Jesus gives incredible insight into the economics of His Kingdom and how to prosper within His eternal ecosystem. The poor in spirit are the ones who will inherit His Kingdom. Being poor in spirit means being spiritually impoverished or bankrupt. Yet, scripture makes it clear that no one is righteous (Ps 14:3, Is 53:6, Is 64:6, Rm 3:10, Rm 3:23). Every one of us is in this state of destitution. So, Jesus is not saying that some people are spiritually wealthy while others are beggars. His teachings make it clear that apart from Him we all are equally impoverished.

The point of differentiation He is making is that some people are keenly aware of their true spiritual condition, while others try to ignore it and hide it from others. Such was the case with the Pharisees and teachers of the law in Luke 5:30-32. Because they did not realize that they were just as spiritual needy as the tax collectors and sinners, Jesus left them in their unrepentant and unhealed state. If we do not see our need for Jesus in every moment of life, we will not position ourselves to receive what we need from Him.

Another of Jesus’ teachings helps clarify this point. In Matthew 5:25-26, Jesus advises His followers to settle matters quickly when they are on the road with their accuser before they get to the judge, lest they be put in prison and handed over to the tormenter. One of the key principles Jesus is conveying here is how we position ourselves whenever Satan the accuser comes along and brings accusations against us. Instead of us making excuses for our sin and failure, we freely admit our bankrupt state. We are quick to take the low road of humility with confession and repentance because we are fully aware of our shortcomings. Otherwise, the accuser’s accusations against us in the courtroom of God will be proven valid and the enemy will be given permission to imprison the part of our life where we refuse to confess the truth and allow God’s mercy and forgiveness to set us free in that area of our life.

This same principle should carry over into every area of our life. If someone says that we wronged them, we don’t argue the point with them. Rather, we quickly and readily repent. If someone says that we don’t understand them, we quickly agree. If our spouse says we have no idea how difficult their day was, rather than retorting our list of difficulties, the better solution is to agree that we have no idea how difficult their day was and to release sympathy and compassion toward them.

Being poor in spirit is the recognition that we do not have the answers and instead of being self-confident, our starting point in every situation is the realization that our only hope is for God to show up and bring His strength into the situation lest we be left to ourselves.


Lord, I repent for not realizing my state of spiritual poverty. I repent for not readily confessing my weaknesses and failures to You, and others. I confess my change of heart posture right now. I want to be set free from my pride and worthless self-strength. I establish my faith and confidence in You alone. Help me grow in the area of dependency upon You and humility in my posture toward others. Bring the change needed in my heart and life for me to walk in the reality of my spiritual poverty all the days of my life.

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